For the best experience, open
on your mobile browser.

Pro-Palestinians protesters, Israel supporters clash at UCLA

Nationwide, pro-Palestinian protests have gained momentum, sparked by the mass arrest of over 100 individuals at Columbia University
10:46 AM Apr 29, 2024 IST | Wahid Bukhari
pro palestinians protesters  israel supporters clash at ucla
Screengrab from a video. For Representation Source: NBCL

Srinagar, April 29: Protests at universities in the US continued over the weekend, with more arrests nationwide and clashes between pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian demonstrators at UCLA, where a tent encampment was established last week, reports said.


The pro-Palestinian encampment at the University of California, Los Angeles, grew in recent days, drawing increased vocal and visible counter-protesters. However, tensions escalated on Sunday when some demonstrators breached a barrier erected by the school to separate the opposing groups, according to Mary Osako, UCLA's vice chancellor for strategic communications.


Altercations ensued as members from both factions shoved, shouted insults, and traded punches. Although campus police intervened with batons to separate the groups, the situation remained tense, reported Reuters news agency.


Osako expressed disappointment over the violence, stating, "UCLA has a long history of peaceful protest."


Following the disturbance, chanting subsided, and pro-Palestinian protesters returned to their encampment.


Despite the incident, the Los Angeles police did not intervene, and no arrests were reported.


Meanwhile, President Joe Biden reiterated his stance on the potential invasion of Rafah, Gaza, during a conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.


The demonstrations at UCLA involved participants from outside the university, with two groups allowed to express their views on campus. The Harriet Tubman Center for Social Justice supported students' right to protest, while Stand in Support of Jewish Students, in collaboration with the Israeli-American Council, aimed to counter hatred and antisemitism.

Nationwide, pro-Palestinian protests have gained momentum, sparked by the mass arrest of over 100 individuals at Columbia University. Hundreds of protesters across the U.S. have been arrested as they emulate the encampments used by Columbia students to highlight the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

Administrators, including those at Columbia, have criticized the protests for violating school rules, disrupting learning, and fostering harassment and antisemitism. Protesters are calling for a ceasefire in the conflict with Hamas, divestment from companies linked to the Israeli military, and an end to U.S. military aid to Israel.

While acknowledging isolated incidents of antisemitism and harassment, student leaders attribute them to external agitators attempting to co-opt the movement.

The nationwide protests have drawn attention from President Biden, who recognizes the strong sentiments surrounding the Gaza conflict. White House national security spokesman John Kirby affirmed the right to peaceful protest but condemned antisemitism and hate speech.

At USC, the administration cancelled the main commencement ceremony after cancelling a Muslim student's valedictorian speech in response to allegations of anti-Palestinian bias.

Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass defended the cancellation, citing concerns over safety for the expected 65,000 attendees.

Tags :